IFAS Faculty Council Meeting Minutes
June 14, 2006
Members present: Martin Adjei, Elizabeth Bolton, John Davis, Lochrane Gary, Jude Grosser, Lisa
Guion (chair), Bob Hochmuth, Gail Kauwell, Heather McAuslane, Mike Sweat
Members absent: Ed Jennings, Jane Polston, Fritz Roka
Chair Lisa Guion called the meeting to order at 1:30 p.m. in the Micanopy room of the Reitz
Union. Senior Vice President Cheek was present. Guests present included Drs. Randy Duran
(Chemistry), Ben Dunn (Biochemistry), David Julian (Zoology), and Troy Sadler (College of
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Science for Life Program. Randy Duran introduced his
colleagues (named above) involved in this new program. He plans to make presentations
throughout the University about this recently funded program which involves four colleges at UF,
Scripps Institute, Morehouse College and several European partners. This is a prestigious award
from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the largest private founder of science education, with
only six awards funded out of 160 applications. The program will be administered by the
University-wide Honors Program with involvement so far of 175 faculty mentors in 49
There are six areas of emphasis:
1. Undergraduate student research Undergraduate research awards of $2,000 will be
given to 70 to 100 outstanding freshmen each year for 4 years. Students will participate
in a Science for Life seminar course where faculty interested in mentoring these students
can showcase their research program in lively 15-minute talks. Students then contact
appropriate faculty mentors, commit to a 1- to 2-year research plan, and develop a
research proposal in the second semester of their freshman year. IFAS faculty with a
strong interest in mentoring very bright undergraduates may contact Ben Dunn
(email@example.com) or Randy Duran (firstname.lastname@example.org) to get on the mentoring list and
apply for a slot in the Science for Life seminar. In addition to this seminar there will be a
mentoring seminar aimed at faculty to help them learn how to be good mentors to these
2. Graduate student award Awards of $500 will be presented to up to 20 graduate
students per year who publish quality scientific articles with undergraduates.
3. Future and current faculty development One part of this initiative is to enhance the
diversity of the future faculty pool. There will be four postdoctoral scientists funded at
Morehouse College with a split appointment (75% research and 25% teaching).
Postdoctoral scientists will receive $50,000 per year for 2 years and then $20,000 for
academic start up. There will be 28 2-year professorships available to current faculty to
be funded at $5000/year (24 at UF and four at Morehouse). The criteria for
professorships are demonstrated excellence in undergraduate mentoring associated with
research in the life sciences (as evidenced by, for example, undergraduate co-authored
peer-reviewed publications, undergraduate presentations at major scientific conferences,
mentee success, and grant funding for undergraduate research).
4. Equipment and laboratory development A multidisciplinary wet lab (250 m2) is being
constructed in the Medical Complex. Up to 1000 undergraduates per year will be
accommodated in an integrated series of honors core sciences early in their academic
careers. Labs will be well equipped with the latest advanced equipment which will be
used throughout the curriculum.
5. Curriculum development Curriculum in the sciences is being redesigned because this
program has the potential of reaching 100s of future middle and high school science
teachers. The current program for training high school teachers is the ProTeach program
(a 5th year Masters degree). There will now be an 18-credit education minor available to
all science majors. A new graduate-level course called College Science Teaching and
Mentoring is being developed by the College of Education (EDG 6931). The honors
program will encourage double and triple majors. There are openings for lab courses to
be taught in the wet lab. Elaine Turner is on the curriculum core development
committee. The science education plan will meet the emerging State of Florida teaching
accreditation guidelines. The COE does not have an advisory committee to develop the
core minor but Randy Duran thought that this was a good idea.
6. Summer training of high school teachers A professional development opportunity will
be available to 12 high school teachers teaching at one of six identified low-performing
urban high schools in Florida. Teachers will be trained in advanced life science topics
that they can take back to their schools along with lesson plans.
It was suggested that we offer Randy Duran the opportunity to speak at the CALS Teaching
Enhancement Symposium in August to publicize this program and the opportunities for IFAS
faculty involvement. Drs. Duran, Dunn, Sadler and Julian left at 2:30 p.m.
Update and Comments from Senior Vice President Cheek.
1. Sr. VP Cheek confirmed that IFAS faired well this legislative year. Elizabeth Bolton
thanked him for his leadership in presenting IFAS' needs to our state legislators.
2. Chair Lisa Guion asked whether there was a process for changing Internal Management
Memoranda (IMMs). Sr. VP Cheek replied that the current process is for an interested
party to make changes, bring the changes to the notice of the Deans and Sr. VP who
discuss the changes, bring these suggested changes to the Faculty Council for their
thoughts, and then make a final decision. All IMMs are in need of updating. This will be
part of the task of the faculty group (currently four IFAS senators and the entire IFAS
Faculty Council) charged with developing the IFAS by-laws but this group should only
initially address those IMMs that are obviously at odds with shared governance. The by-
laws will put in place the mechanism to change other IMMs as needed.
3. In response to a question about the use of PolyCom by Faculty Council members who
cannot attend Faculty Council meetings, Sr. VP Cheek said that face-to-face discussion
is always best but that use of PolyCom to conduct FC business, when necessary, was a
good use of the technology.
4. In response to a question about the potential overlapping roles of Faculty Council
members and IFAS senators, Sr. VP Cheek said that these two groups have very
different roles and that he would not recommend abolishing the Faculty Council and
using a subset of the senators as his council nor would he like to see Faculty Council
members appointed rather than elected. He wants the Faculty Council and IFAS
senators to communicate more effectively. To enhance this communication he plans to
invite Faculty Council members to join the fall luncheon for IFAS senators that he initiated
in Fall 2005.
5. Sr. VP Cheek wants to conduct a statewide faculty meeting soon but the logistics
(streaming video, PolyCom) have not yet been worked out.
6. Sr. VP Cheek will accommodate Chair Guion's request for up to 4 person-hours per
month on fact-finding for the Faculty Council meetings.
7. In response to the Faculty Council's suggestion that IFAS raise its profile within the
University, Sr. VP Cheek agreed that we do need to improve visibility internally. We need
to get more IFAS faculty and events publicized in the Gainesville Sun and the Alligator. A
Faculty Council member suggested that we think about "social marketing" and try to get
stories that feature IFAS/cross-university collaborations in the glossy magazines of other
8. In response to a question from a Faculty Council member about progress in improving
post-award handling of grants, Sr. VP Cheek said that the whole grant-handling process
is not good, not just post award, and that this is a university-wide problem. A new
paradigm has been developed for handling grants (using funding agency-specific
specialists) but has not yet been approved. The new PeopleSoft grants report should
give faculty more of the information that we need. The PeopleSoft-related problems with
grants should be resolved by February 2007 after which time changes in administration of
grants may be attempted.
9. Sr. VP Cheek did not meet with much success in getting changes made in the Fleet
Management Initiative to prevent IFAS from being crippled in its missions of extension
and field-based research. Hopefully faculty response will have an impact on the final
form of the initiative.
Having no further questions from the Faculty Council, Sr. VP Cheek left at 3:15 p.m.
Report on IFAS Tenure, Promotion and Permanent Status Committee Election. On-line
voting was very successful with 100 more votes received in this year's election (390) than in the
previous year. Chair Guion thanked Paul Willis, Executive Assistant to Sr. VP Cheek, for
handling the voting.
Report on IFAS Faculty Council Nominations and Election. Mike Sweat relayed that there
are 13 nominees for the Faculty Council. Balloting will open June 23rd for a two-week period and
will again be conducted on-line. Opening the voting was delayed so as not to overlap with voting
for the Tenure, Promotion and Permanent Status Committee.
Nominations for IFAS Faculty Chair. Two nominees for chair were identified in previous
meetings: Elizabeth Bolton and Fritz Roka. Elizabeth deferred to Fritz to encourage leadership
opportunities for a young, off-campus faculty member. If Fritz agrees to serve, the Faculty
Council will elect him by acclamation.
IFAS Shared Governance and Development of By-Laws. The committee to address the task
of writing IFAS by-laws now consists of the Faculty Council and four IFAS senators (Curt Hannah,
Jim Selph, Elizabeth Bolton, and Bill Lindberg). Chair Guion will obtain and forward to this group
a list of current CALS committees, the most recent version of all IMMs, and the College of
Nursing's by-laws. The four senators will be invited to the July 11 meeting where the majority of
the time will be spent developing a timeline for drafting by-laws and the mechanics of how this will
Future Meetings of the Faculty Council. Upcoming meetings will be held from 1:30 till 4:30 in
Room 102 of Animal Science Building 499 on July 11 and August 29.
The minutes of the May meeting of the Faculty Council were accepted after corrections. The
meeting was adjourned at 4:35 p.m.
Heather McAuslane (Secretary)